I noticed this several times already:

In CW-questions e.g. here (active user) or answers e.g. here (deleted user) not the current (or anonymized) user name but rather the one that was active at the time the post was edited is shown.

For example:

Screen shot of old vs. new usernames

I think it would be less confusing if the current username was displayed and in the interest of those who decided to leave it would be great if their usernames were removed from CW as well.

Since I should ask a question: why is it the way it is?

Edit: While I'm at it: Why is in this question

Screen shot of unknown


  • 2
    $\begingroup$ I recall seeing this effect on a question, and (assuming I am correctly remembering which question I originally saw) it is no longer the case there (I am now wary of mentioning anyone + anything specifically on meta...). So maybe it is corrected after a sufficiently long amount of time? $\endgroup$ Sep 7, 2011 at 0:02
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks Zev. My second link goes to an example from Aug 22 '10 at 8:12... :) $\endgroup$
    – t.b.
    Sep 7, 2011 at 0:04
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Regarding your edit: some months ago, I observed a similar behaviour, but with the user "anon" instead of "unknown". See Strange author of community wiki post. $\endgroup$ Sep 7, 2011 at 7:49
  • $\begingroup$ @Ben Can bugs be declined, or did you mean status-by-design? $\endgroup$
    – user147263
    Oct 3, 2014 at 11:31

1 Answer 1


This is a known issue, and a won't fix (or rather by-design) I believe. See here: Old usernames stick to Community Wiki posts

Basically, they store the name which was, at that moment in time.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Thanks, Aryabhata! It would still be nice if they did re-normalize that de-normalized entry every once in a while (hoping I got the jargon right). Do I underestimate how costly that would be? At least when a user is nuked out of the system it shouldn't be too hard to sanitize that entry... $\endgroup$
    – t.b.
    Sep 7, 2011 at 10:04
  • $\begingroup$ @THeo: Yeah, given that they try and remove any upvotes/downvotes cast by a deleted user, seems like this should be easy, but who knows :-) $\endgroup$
    – Aryabhata
    Sep 7, 2011 at 15:43

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